Game Twenty – Cubs 4 Nationals 3 – 10 innings
WP – Carlos Marmol (1-0) LP – Brian Bruney (0-1) Save – None
The Cubs won their fourth in a row in walk off fashion on Monday night. After jumping out to an early 3-0 lead, the Cubs were unable to tack on and Nationals tied the game at three in the sixth. The game remained knotted at three until the 10th.
Ryan Theriot led off the extra frame with his second hit of the game … the sixth multi-hit game in a row for the Cubs’ shortstop. After Jeff Baker failed to bunt him over, Derrek Lee walked on four pitches. Marlon Byrd blooped a single into center to load the bases for Aramis Ramirez.
Ramirez never took the bat off his shoulder. After dodging an inside pitch on the first offering from Brian Bruney, Ramirez looked at three more out of the zone. Ramirez took ball four and Theriot trotted in from third.
The Cubs showed a lot of patience on a cold night at Wrigley with the wind blowing straight in. Two of the Cubs four runs on Monday night came via a bases loaded walk. Carlos Silva was credited with his second RBI of the season when he looked at four straight out of the zone in the second inning.
Lou Piniella’s offense walked a total of eight times, three by Alfonso Soriano, but none bigger than the one in the tenth that evened the Cubs’ record on the season to 10-10.
Carlos Silva put together another quality start but struggled a little with his command and seemed to get frustrated with the strike zone. Silva appeared to get squeezed on several occasions, especially during the at bat by Josh Willingham in the fourth. Silva ended up walking Willingham with the bases loaded and forcing in the Nationals’ first run of the game.
Carlos Silva allowed three runs on seven hits with a walk and three strikeouts in seven innings.
Carlos Zambrano and Carlos Marmol were electric out of the pen. Zambrano gave up a hit in his 1 2/3 innings of work but struck out Wil Nieves swinging on a 94 MPH heater to end the eighth … then retired the Nats in order in the ninth. Marmol surrendered a double to Adam Dunn but threw strikes and picked up his first win of the season.
The Cubs started the homestand on a positive note. Lou Piniella’s crew have won five of their last six and are back to .500 … The Cubs showed little to no patience against John Lannan in the first inning … and it looked like it was going to be a long night. Lannan retired the Cubs in order on just eight pitches. But Marlon Byrd ignited the offense again in the second.
Byrd ended up with his fifth consecutive multi-hit game and led off the second with a line drive double to left on a 1-2 pitch. Aramis Ramirez followed with a double to center over Nyjer Morgan’s head. Byrd scored … 1-0 Cubs.
Alfonso Soriano then hit a deep fly out to center, Ramirez tagged and advanced to third on the productive out. Geovany Soto and Tyler Colvin walked to load the bases for Carlos Silva.
Silva ended up helping his own cause. He looked at four straight out of the strike zone from John Lannan. Ramirez scored on the first of three bases loaded walks on the night.
Ryan Theriot then hit a short fly to right on a 1-2 pitch. Willy Taveras caught the ball and made a three-hop throw to the plate to nail Soto to end the inning.
Jeff Baker led off the third with the first of two triples on the night for the Cubs. Derrek Lee grounded out to short with the infield in for the first out. Marlon Byrd (3-for-5 with a double, a run scored and a RBI) hit a chopper over the mound. Cristian Guzman stopped the ball from leaving the infield but could not throw across his body to home. Baker scored and Byrd reached on an infield single.
Aramis Ramirez hit into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.
The Cubs did little against John Lannan after the third inning.
Tyler Colvin tripled in the fourth (his first career three-bagger) and finished the game 1-for-3 with a walk. Colvin started in his third different outfield position in as many games.
The Nationals went to work on Carlos Silva in the fourth. Nyjer Morgan led off with a bunt single up the third base line … the first hit of the game off of Silva. Ian Desmond followed with a single to left past Ryan Theriot.
Silva retired Cristian Guzman on a fly out to left … for the record, Soriano did not hop. Adam Dunn singled to right on Silva’s first offering to load the bases.
Josh Willingham walked with the bases loaded on a 3-2 pitch and forced in Morgan with the Nats first run. Adam Kennedy then hit a sacrifice fly into center and cut the Cubs lead to 3-2.
Josh Willingham singled to center with one out in the sixth and came around to tie the game at three. A wild pitch from Silva advanced Willingham to second then Kennedy moved Willingham to third with a ground out to second.
Wil Nieves ripped Silva’s first pitch into center and plated Willingham with the tying run.
For the first time in 11 games a Cubs’ starter allowed more than two runs.
The game remained tied at three until the 10th. Several players on both sides tried to end it with one swing but the wind was too much on Monday night.
The Cubs improved to 1-1 in extra innings after the walk off walk.
Tom Gorzelanny will face Livan Hernandez under the lights on Tuesday night.